Tag Archives: Madison Square Garden

NYC murders, shootings reach record lows


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYC Mayor’s Office

Mayor Michael Bloomberg is leaving office with the fewest murders and shootings in recorded city history.

He made the announcement Friday along with NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly at the graduation ceremony for 1,171 new police officers at Madison Square Garden.

“New York’s crime-fighting strategies have made us America’s safest big city – and one that cities across the globe want to learn from,” said Bloomberg. “Twelve years ago, no one thought New York’s crime rate could go any lower. But it did.”

There have been 332 homicides so far in 2013, down 20 percent from the previous record low, set last year, according to the mayor. Murders have dropped 32 percent since 2001, when he was elected.

In Queens, there were 1,374 fewer homicides between 2002 and December 20 of this year than during the 12 years prior to that period.

Shootings have declined by 20 percent from 2012’s record low, with 1,093 shootings through Thursday, December 26, and have dropped by 32 percent since 2001.

The city began recording homicide numbers in 1963, when there were 548 murders. The homicide rate peaked in 1990 with 2,245 deaths, according to Police Department stats.

Shootings statistics were first recorded with the introduction of NYPD’s Compstat crime reporting system in 1994, according to the mayor.

Crime in schools and on the subway has also seen significant drops in recent years.

Major crimes in schools are down 56 percent and violent crime has decreased 55 percent since 2001.

In 1990, there were 50 crimes per day on the subway, and only 7.1 crimes per day in 2013.

The mayor said the crime drop could not be attributed to putting more people in prison, since incarceration rates have decreased since 2001.

Policing strategies, such as Operation Impact, which pairs rookie and veteran officers to “flood high-crime zones” and Operation Crew Cut, an initiative combating loosely affiliated gangs, helped keep the shooting and murder rates down, the mayor said.

 

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Cardozo boys basketball team still determined after losing star player


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

The Benjamin Cardozo boys’ basketball team has a bone to pick with those who doubted them.

After top-notch transfer Jaquan McKennon left the team preseason, media outlets dropped the Judges in the PSAL rankings. But behind two key players and a solid roster they still believe they will be one of the city’s top teams.

The Cardozo Judges (2-0) proved just that in their home opener against Martin Van Buren High School (2-1) on Monday, December 9, routing the Fighting Vee Bees, 76-40. Senior Francisco Williams scored 22 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead the team, and sophomore guard Rashond Salnave had 20 points and six assists in the game.

“They said we weren’t going to be that good, so every game we play we got to show out,” Williams said. “Without him (McKennon) we are still going to be a good team. We’re going to win with or without him.”

Williams, who started his high school basketball career at Cardozo, transferred due to personal issues and a health problem with a family member. But following his hiatus he has returned for this final high school year and played his first-ever home game with the Judges against Van Buren. He wants to help the team go far this year.

“I want to take it to the [Madison Square] Garden,” Williams said, referring to the location of the PSAL city championships.

The Judges’ other breakout player is Salnave, who is becoming a top-notch guard in the league. In just his first two games on varsity, the 15-year old combo guard is averaging about 23 points and 5.5 assists.

Besides these two players, the Judges are chock full of talent this year. Senior Carl Edoua Balthazar is a long, lanky forward and a defensive presence on the floor. In the match against Van Buren he finished with 12 rebounds, six blocks and six points.

“Carl is a shot-blocker,” Salnave said. “If we get beat, although it’s not something good to brag about, we know Carl has our back.”

Having coached basketball at Cardozo for more than 30 years, head coach Ron Naclerio knows that the competition will get stiffer as the season drags on. He believes in his team’s strength, but doesn’t want to be cocky.

“I try to say be humble and be hungry,” Naclerio said. “Things could change. Today we were on the north side, but we had some scrimmages where we were on the south side.”

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: Overcast with a chance of rain. High of 81. Breezy. Winds from the NE at 15 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 30%. Thursday night: Overcast with a chance of rain. Low of 66. Winds from the NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Waterfront Concert Series 2013

The band Motor City Revue will perform a tribute to Motown at this outdoor concert on the Astoria Park Lawn at 7:30 p.m. Free. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

City Council approves 10-year limit for Madison Square Garden

The New York City Council voted Wednesday to limit Madison Square Garden’s permit at its current spot above Penn Station to 10 years — a decision cheered by civic organizations campaigning to move the home of the Knicks and Rangers so the busy station can be renovated. Read more: AP

Weiner sends email to supporters in wake of latest sexting scandal

Mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner issued the following letter to supporters Wednesday, a day after revelations that he exchanged graphic emails and photos with a young woman after he resigned from Congress in 2011. Read more: CBS New York

Queens, N.Y., hit-and-run driver speeds away with bicyclist on roof, flinging him off

A motorist callously ignored the pleas of a bicyclist he cut down in Queens, N.Y., early Wednesday — speeding for almost two blocks as the victim clung to the roof, police and a witness said. Read more: New York Daily News

Shirtless man breaches JFK security

A man who wasn’t wearing a shirt reportedly slipped past a secured checkpoint at JFK International Airport. Read more: Fox New York

Woman, child from Oregon used in Eliot Spitzer campaign ad without permission

A campaign ad for former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer that acknowledges his 2008 prostitution scandal with the admission, “I failed, big time,” features a woman from Oregon who did not authorize the appearance. Read more: NBC New York

Senate approves deal to reverse spike in student loan rates

The Senate on Wednesday approved a bipartisan deal to reverse a recent spike in interest rates on millions of new federal student loans. Read more: Reuters 

Clothing line lets fans express frustration with NHL lockout


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of We Bleed Blue

The ongoing NHL lockout has many hockey fans angry as talks between the league and the players’ union have ended in a series of contract talks breakdowns.

For We Bleed Blue, an independent apparel line that primarily makes Rangers clothing, this means sending a message to the league via the shirts they make right in Queens.

Weeks after the 2012-13 NHL lockout began on September 15, We Bleed Blue founders Brendan Gebert and John Rizzo designed a T-shirt that called for the ousting of league commissioner Gary Bettman. The message on the blue tee is simple: “Fire Bettman.”

Gebert explained that this is the third lockout since Bettman took over the league in the early 1990s. “We decided it was time to unite the fans and let our voices be heard,” Gebert said in an email. “What better way then to make a ‘Fire Bettman’ shirt. We understand that it is not entirely Gary Bettman’s fault, but at the same time there have been three lockouts during his reign.”

The T-shirt has been a big seller since it was introduced by the online-only clothing line. And while they say sales of league-approved merchandise has gone down as a result of the lockout, We Bleed Blue has gotten the support of Ranger fans, the founders say, because they would prefer to shop with them than the NHL.

The line’s biggest holiday seller was “The King of New York” design to honor Rangers goalie and incumbent Vezina Trophy winner Henrik Lundqvist. The design features a goalie mask with “King” as the mask’s top, and “New York” as the mask’s bottom.

Defenseman Ryan McDonough and winger Carl Hagelin have also recently been featured in We Bleed Blue apparel. Gebert said the Swedish-born Hagelin tweeted a picture of himself wearing his “Swagelin” sweatshirt while he is back in his homeland.

Support from the players has been one of the proudest facets for the owners. “We go to games, purchase merchandise, and spend a whole lot of time supporting these guys. It’s nice to see them support us and what we are doing here,” Gebert said.

If and when the season begins this year, or next, Gebert and Rizzo said they’ll be at Madison Square Garden for the first puck drop.

“We are all frustrated with the lockout and ongoing negotiations between the NHL and NHLPA (National Hockey League Players’ Association), but we refuse to turn our backs on the league,” Gebert said. “Some fans may say they will not return. We will be at MSG opening night whenever they decide to come to their senses and get a deal done.”

Queens Morning Roundup


| brennison@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: Sunny, with a high near 47. North wind around 7 mph. Thursday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 38. Light and variable wind.

EVENT of the DAY: A Showcase of Artists You Should Know

More than a dozen New York artists showcase their unique styles from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Admission is free and proceeds from the cash bar will go to the United Way of New York’s Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Police grill suspect in brutal Midtown murder

Cops picked up a suspect today in connection to the execution-style slaying of a Los Angeles man in broad daylight in midtown Manhattan, law enforcement sources told The Post. The man was taken into custody for questioning this afternoon in the Rosedale neighborhood of Queens, sources said. He’s one of several persons of interest that police want to speak with. Read more: NY Post

Bieber Madison Square Garden murder plot foiled

Cops foiled a wild murder plot hatched by two New Mexico men who planned to castrate and murder Justin Bieber, it was revealed today. The men, Mark Staake and his nephew Tanner Ruane, planned to kill Bieber and his bodyguard during a show the singing sensation was to perform at Madison Square Garden. Read more: Daily News

An All-Star Concert in Reply to a Storm

There were the Rolling Stones. There were Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel and Bon Jovi. There were the Who and Eric Clapton. The two surviving members of Nirvana reunited to sing with Paul McCartney. And there, too, amid all the aging rockers, were Kanye West and Alicia Keys. Read more: NY Times

Suspect in murders of both mother and father says he didn’t do it

The DNA under his mom’s fingernails wasn’t evidence of murder — it was merely motherly love. Wednesday’s arraignment of the 36-year-old problem child accused of killing his mother and father in separate incidents a year apart revealed the murderer’s chilling alibi when investigators first closed in. Read more: Daily News

Relief on the way for flood-prone areas of Queens

Relief may finally be on the way for some flood-prone areas of Queens. The city Department of Environmental Protection has approved two capital projects to help drainage in Middle Village, Maspeth and Glendale. Read more: Daily News

Sandy victims in city can now apply for food aid

Applications are now being accepted for Federal Disaster Food aid. Residents living in eligible zip codes can apply for the Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or “D-SNAP” through next Tuesday. Read more: NY1

 

Knicks bring ‘Basketball in the Boroughs’


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

NYK_120912_

Basketball in the Boroughs, an initiative by by the New York Knicks and Chase Bank, tipped-off with a spotlight on Queens.

The Knicks’ game at Madison Square Garden against the Denver Nuggets on Sunday, December 9 began with the national anthem sung by recording artist and Queens native Lea Sunshine. Queens residents were featured throughout the evening, with a talent search and honors for volunteers throughout the borough.

After the game, Sunshine Tweeted that she was thrilled to take the Garden floor as a native New Yorker. Her favorite part of the night was a congratulations from Knicks superfan Spike Lee after the ceremony.

“We are thrilled to partner with the Knicks and the city of New York to launch Basketball in the Boroughs,” said Colleen Canny, senior vice president and northeast regional manager for Chase. “It’s a creative way to inspire these young fans right in their own neighborhoods while reinforcing our commitment to the communities we serve throughout New York City.”

Larry Johnson, a popular former Knick and the team’s Basketball and Business Operations Representative, as well as some of the Knicks City Dancers, met with fans at the Chase Bank on Queens Boulevard and 46th Street in Sunnyside on December 3. Later that day, current players Raymond Felton and J.R. Smith met with fans at a Fresh Meadows branch.

The team also hosted a free basketball clinic at the Sorrentino Recreation Center in Far Rockaway on Thursday, December 6, with a second appearance by Johnson and the City Dancers. Other attendees included Knicks training coaches and State Senator Malcolm Smith.

“It was phenomenal,” said Iris Rodriguez-Rosa, chief of Queens recreation at NYC Parks and Recreation.

During the clinic, kids from P.S. 20 did actual NBA drills with coaches and push ups with Johnson. At the end of the day, the kids were given tickets to Sunday night’s game, Rodriguez-Rosa said, and were featured on the big screen as part of the evening’s celebrations.

The program will continue spotlighting Staten Island in January; Brooklyn in February; The Bronx in March; and Manhattan in April.

Knicks End Playoff Futility With 89-87 Win Over Heat At Garden


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Their backs against the wall, the New York Knicks edged the Miami Heat 89-87 at Madison Square Garden Sunday night to end their playoff losing streak and extend their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal playoff series. Carmelo Anthony had 41 points for New York, including a three-pointer that gave the Knicks the lead with 54 seconds remaining, to send the series back to Miami for Game 5. The win allowed the Knicks to avoid a four-game sweep of the best-of-seven series, and halted their playoff losing streak at 13 games, an NBA record. Read More: NY1

Queens native and St. John’s freshman Moe Harkless declares for NBA Draft


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Harkless2

After an award-winning freshman season, Moe Harkless has decided to test the waters of the NBA draft.

The Queens native announced his decision on Monday, March 19 at Madison Square Garden alongside his mother Rosa and Red Storm head coach Steve Lavin.

“It has been my lifelong dream to play in the NBA, and I am excited to have that opportunity to make the jump,” said Harkless. “I am grateful to my teammates and coaches at St. John’s. I would like to thank Coach Lavin, our staff and my teammates for being there for me throughout the whole season.”

Draft projections have the 6-foot-8-inch small forward being picked in the middle of the first round.

Harkless capped his celebrated first season at St. John’s — he was sixth nationally among freshmen in scoring and third in rebounding — by being named the Big East Rookie of the Year.

A stat-sheet filler, Harkless finished with per game averages of 15.5 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.6 steals and 1.4 blocks.

While many fans were excited about the direction the team was headed behind this year’s “Fresh 5,” Lavin has said that players leaving early for the NBA helps the program gain traction on the recruiting trail.

“We are proud of what Moe and our young group accomplished this season — Moe is an example that St. John’s is once again a destination for top-caliber talent and we look forward to following his progress,” Lavin said.

Speaking about his teammates, Harkless said, “We have been through a lot together and I know everyone is excited for me. I know if we all keep working hard, a lot of us will be playing together in the league someday. I believe this is only the beginning for Coach Lavin and his successful legacy at St. John’s.”

Next year’s team should return five of the six players in the Johnnies’ rotation and add Texas A&M transfer Jamal Branch. JaKarr Sampson has recommitted to the Red Storm after being declared academically ineligible before the season and the team also received a verbal commitment from Felix Balamou.

“I really enjoyed playing with Moe,” said D’Angelo Harrison who set the St. John’s record for points by a freshman. “He is a great player and I wish him luck and success in the NBA. I hope to join him in the league in a few years.”

The last Red Storm player to be drafted was Omar Cook in 2001. Cook, who was also a freshman when he entered the draft, is often touted as an example of college players leaving too early. He was taken in the second round and played in only 22 NBA games in his career.

Harkless can still return to St. John’s if he does not sign with an agent, though he is in the process of finding one. Players have until May 8 to withdraw from the draft which will be held on June 28.

 

Train Like a Knick: New contest supports city hoop dreams


| smosco@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Michael Pantelidis

With “Lin-sanity” in full swing and Carmelo Anthony returning to the lineup, it seems like everybody wants to play on the New York Knickerbockers these days.

Now city kids will have that chance as the Big Apple’s hoops squad is teaming up with the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) in announcing the launch of the first ever, “Train Like a Knick!” fan contest.

Supporting the importance of overall fitness and wellness, fans are invited to submit entertaining and healthy exercise videos showing how they train like their favorite Knicks players. The contest winners will receive a Knicks training experience at MSG Training Center, including personalized basketball drills and workouts with Knicks alumni and team’s training and rehabilitation staff.

“The exercise session designed by HSS reminded me that physical training sometimes goes beyond the basketball court,” said John Starks, who played for the Knicks from 1990 to 1998 and is currently an alumni relations and fan development advisor for the team. “My hope is that all recreational players understand the importance of exercise when playing basketball and will continue to lead a healthy lifestyle.”

Basketball fans 16 years of age and older are invited to submit a short video of 60 seconds or less showcasing how they “Train Like a Knick.” All content will be evaluated on originality, creativity and association with health and wellness. This may include specific basketball drills on rebounding and defense, stretching exercises or even making healthy food choices. Submissions will be accepted via HSS’s Facebook page until March 15, 2012.

Five finalists will be selected, and then fans across the country will have the opportunity to vote for their three favorites. In addition, each winner can invite up to four friends to “Train Like a Knick” too. One grand prize winner will also receive a VIP Knicks package.

“On behalf of HSS, we are proud to support the New York Knicks and are excited to bring this program and health and wellness messages to the fans,” said Lou Shapiro, president and CEO of HSS. “Together we strive to help both the professional athlete and the ‘weekend warrior’ keep moving and stay injury-free.”

To enter the “Train Like a Knick!” contest, fans must first “Like” Hospital for Special Surgery on Facebook. The “Train Like a Knick” contest is open to legal U.S. residents of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, at least 16 years old at the time of entry, who reside within a 75-mile radius of Madison Square Garden.

Cardozo wins Queens basketball title


| smosco@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Steve Mosco

The Benjamin Cardozo Judges continued their winning ways in Queens, defeating the Long Island City Bulldogs, 69-58, to capture the borough championship at York College on Saturday, February 11.

The victory was the Judges’ third Queens championship win in as many years, this time led by senior Tajay Henry’s 21 points and 10 rebounds. The towering forward drilled many key baskets, including a dramatic dunk as time, and the game, slipped away from the Bulldogs.

Cardozo led the contest from beginning to end and seemed on the verge of blowing out L.I.C. as they took a 51-36 lead late in the game. However, the Bulldogs were able to hang tough, cutting the deficit to just four points late in the final quarter.

And they might have won the game too, if not for Cardozo junior Kyle Credle. The 5-foot-10-inch guard scored seven of his 10 points in the fourth, nailing a crucial three-pointer that all but sealed the deal with under one minute remaining and gave the Judges the championship. Rounding out the scoring for Cardozo were senior Rasheed Robinson with 13 points and eight rebounds and senior Ryan Yearwood with nine points and eight rebounds.

The Bulldogs, who upset top-seeded Bayside High School in the team’s prior series and was the only team from the Queens ‘A’ division to reach the borough playoffs, managed to stay in the game behind seniors Sadji Camara and Arthur Santanna who each scored 17 points in the loss. In the upset win over Bayside, L.I.C. was led by senior Xavier Jones with 18 points, while Santanna and Camara scored 15 and 14 points, respectively.

Next up for the Judges is the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) class ‘AA’ playoffs, in which the school grabbed the fifth seed. Games start this week and the finals will be played at Madison Square Garden on March 17. It’s not over for L.I.C., as the Bulldogs will compete in the PSAL’s class ‘A’ playoffs, culminating with the finals on March 18.

St. John’s trounced by Syracuse 95-70


| brennison@queenscourier.com

St. John’s-Syracuse games at MadisonSquareGarden often have a buzz as both squads’ lay claim to being New York’s team. This day though belonged to second-ranked Syracuse as the Orange (23-1, 10-1 Big East) trounced the Red Storm (10-13, 4-7) 95-70.  Throughout the game – especially in the second half – the sold-out Garden sounded more like the Carrier Dome –Syracuse’s home court.

Chants of “Let’s go Orange” filled Syracuse’s “second home” as the team increased their lead, continually getting easy baskets.

St. John’s has now played nine ranked teams this year – including the number one and number two teams in the nation – losing each game. The Johnnies beat six ranked opponents last year.

The Johnnies fell behind early and could never claw their way back into the game. Confronted with the same situation they faced against Duke a week prior – trailing by more than 20 points against a top 10 team – St. John’s could not make the stops they needed to go on a sustained run. 

Syracuse’s size allowed them to play above the rim and get the shots they wanted all game – the team shot 56 percent from the field and had 52 points in the paint.

“We moved the ball really well,” said Jim Boeheim, who tied Dean Smith for third place on the all-time wins list with 879. “We got really good shots every time down the court.”

 “Beginning, middle and end, they dominated us on the boards and they converted off of those second chance points,” said assistant coach Mike Dunlap, who continues to fill in for Steve Lavin as he recovers from prostate cancer surgery.

The Orange grabbed 16 of their 31 misses converting many second chance scoring opportunities.

Any hopes of a Red Storm comeback were squelched within the second half’s first two and a half minutes as the Orange went on a 9-0 run and Moe Harkless picked up his third and fourth fouls forcing him to the bench.

The Johnnies were never able to get within 20 after the Orange’s early second half run.

St. John’s all-freshmen starting lineup – the “Fresh Five” – was not on the court at the opening tip for the first time in four games as D’Angelo Harrison was late for the bus and sat out the opening 2 minutes.

After being held scoreless over the game’s first three minutes and thirty seconds, Syracuse went on a 12-2 run to take a lead they never relinquished.  A 6-0 run to end the first half pushed the Orange’s lead into double digits and then their 9-0 run to open the second half put the game out of reach.

The 95 points was the most St. John’s has given up all year and the most a Big East team has scored in a conference game this season.

Harrison led the Johnnies with 23 points and added five assists and four rebounds.

Fab Melo – in his first game back from suspension – Dion Waiters and C.J. Fair led 10 Orange in the scoring column with 14 points

St. John’s next faces Cincinnati (15-7, 5-4) on Wednesday, February 8 at MSG.  The Johnnies defeated the Bearcats earlier this year 57-55 atCincinnati.

It’s Track Time: Colgate Games finals set to take off


| smosco@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of the Colgate Women’s Games

The wait is over.

After weeks of training and preliminaries, the finale of the Colgate Women’s Games is at hand, as the nation’s top talent will gather at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, January 28 at 10 a.m. to compete for glory.

From an initial field of more than 10,000 girls and young women, 210 of the best athletes have persevered through four preliminary meets and a semi-final at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn to earn spots at the finals of the 38th annual Games. The girls come from every age/grade division, with returning champions standing side-by-side with local newcomers — all sharing the spotlight and the adulation of family, friends and fans.

Two notable students to keep an eye on during the finals come from Queens. In the High School division, returning freshman Sandreeka Bancroft of Cardozo High School, who holds the mid school record in the 55-meter hurdles, crossed the tape in 8.25 on Saturday. Teammate Latisha Philson, a senior at Cardozo and the high school 55-meter hurdles record holder, chose the 55-meter dash this year and also finished undefeated after her 7.21 performance at the semis.

Meet director Fred Thompson said the number of returning champions and promising newcomers that finished in first place this season are nearly perfectly balanced.

“This is a great sign that the sport is alive and well, and that our meets are still attracting top talent with performances that remain the national benchmarks to beat,” he said. “The Madison Square Garden finals will spotlight some of the nation’s best athletes from every division.”

Thompson also thanked the parents and coaches of all the participants for their support. Each week, parents made the trek to Pratt Institute to give their girls a shot in the Games — and for this, Thompson is extremely grateful.

“Every parent and coach that supported their kids by bringing them to Brooklyn each week, including hundreds that travelled great distances, should know that they’ve made an outstanding contribution to these kids that will have a positive impact throughout their lives,” he said.

Be there when the champions are crowned. The competition kicks off at 10 a.m. The Big Apple Circus will provide entertainment during the intermission/track reconfiguration at approximately 1 p.m.

Stars head to Colgate Games


| smosco@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of Colgate Games

The final preliminary meet of the nation’s largest track series, the Colgate Women’s Games, featured some of the East Coast’s best athletic talent, as competitors of all ages set the national pace with fast times and excellent performances.

A pair of teammates from Queens stood out at the January 14 meet at the Pratt institute in Brooklyn, as Sandreeka Bancroft, a former mid-school record breaker, returning as a freshman at Cardozo High School in Queens, stayed undefeated in the 55 meter hurdles, after her series-best performance, (8.1). Teammate Latisha Philson, a senior at Cardozo also made it a perfect series after matching her best in the 55-meter dash, (6.9).

Athletic success extended to the city’s other boroughs as well, with Brooklyn’s Sandrae Farquharson from Medgar Evers College Prep, winning the 200 meters in 24.8 and the 400 meters in 56.3 in the high school division – both scores were her best times this year.

The Bronx was represented as well, with Egypt Parker, of the Learning Tree, leading throughout the series in the shot put, tossing 9.85 meters. Brianna Brown of P.S. 6X in the Bronx, one of the youngest participants, scored double wins throughout the series in the 55-meter dash and 200 meters. Also in the College/Open division Tara DiLuca of the Bronx, won her fourth 55 meter hurdles race, in 8.3.

Meet director Fred Thompson said that the Games are among the nation’s most competitive meets, but the true benefits go beyond athletic excellence.

“Thousands of girls each year have a great time learning how to compete, and will draw on these skills throughout their lives,” he said. “They’ll learn how to work hard and challenge themselves, discovering how fast and how far they can go. It’s not just about those who become national champions or even Olympians, it’s more about the countless young people whose lives have been positively influenced by this experience.”

From an initial field of more than 11,000, some 430 top point scorers will compete in the semi-finals at Pratt to determine who will face each other at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, January 28, 2012, where trophies and educational grants-in-aid from Colgate-Palmolive Company are awarded to top place finishers in each age/grade division.

Coaches, recruiters, athletes and fans can follow scores each week at Colgategames.com. Tickets to the Colgate Women’s Games Finals are free. To order tickets, please visit www.colgategames.com, the MSG box office or www.ticketmaster.com.

St. John’s falls to #11 Georgetown at MSG


| brennison@queenscourier.com

After jumping out to an early 13-5 lead, St. John’s struggled to find an offensive groove and fell to the 11th ranked Georgetown Hoyas 69-49.

The Johnnies (8-9, 2-4 Big East) scored just six points over the last 12 minutes of the first half after their quick start allowing the Hoyas a chance to get take a lead they never relinquished.

Both teams struggled from the field in the first half – each squad shot under 35 percent. The Johnnies shooting troubles continued in the second half – the team shot 8-27 after hitting only 9-27 shots in the first half.

Shooting has been an issue all year for St. John’s – they came into the game second to last in the conference in field goal percentage and dead last in 3-point field goal percentage.

The length of the Hoyas did not make the Johnnies shooting struggles any easier. Georgetown played six guys over 6-foot-8-inches tall; many times having four on the court at the same time.

“They were really long,” said Moe Harkless. “I think we didn’t do a great job of attacking their zone.”

Georgetown (14-3, 4-2) discovered their shooting stroke at half time, led by Hollis Thompson who made all seven of his shots in the second half, including five three pointers, after missing all six of his shots over the game’s first 20 minutes.

Twice in the second half the Johnnies were able to climb to within three, but each time saw the Hoyas immediately answer with a sustained run. After St. John’s made it 28-25, Georgetown scored nine straight points to stretch their lead to a dozen. The Red Storm were again within one possession of tying the game with 6:36 remaining in the game before Georgetown closed the game on a 21-4 run.

A majority of the Red Storm offense came from the Queens native Harkless. The freshman had nine of the team’s 17 field goals while scoring 21 points.

The team managed just one field goal over the last 5:15 following Harkless picking up his fifth and final foul.

Reigning Big East Rookie of the Week D’Angelo Harrison suffered through the worst game of his college career scoring only five points on 1-12 shooting and committing several key turnovers on fast breaks.

“I have to do a better job of slowing down and finding the open guy,” Harrison said after the game. “Like coach says find the path that’s open, not the one you want.”

The 19 points the Johnnies scored in the first half was their lowest scoring half of the season. The game also marked the first time St. John’s was held under 50 points. The Red Storm have lost all seven games played this year against ranked opponents after beating six last year.

St. John’s now travels to South Florida (10-8, 3-2) to face the Bulls on Wednesday, January 18.

Sports lovers cry foul after MSG blackout


| brennison@queenscourier.com

If a game is played and no one is able to watch it, did it really happen?

More than one million sports fans have faced off with this problem after MSG was dropped from the Time Warner Cable lineup on January 1.

The sports network and Time Warner are more than two weeks into their standoff leaving Knicks, Rangers, Islanders and Devils fans in the lurch.

The dispute is over licensing fees that cable companies pay networks in order to carry their channel.  MSG wants more than Time Warner is offering and Time Warner is not willing to pay what MSG is asking.

Time Warner’s senior vice president, Mike Angus, said the two companies reached a deal last year that was agreed to by both sides — but claimed MSG reneged on the deal.

The network said that Time Warner rejected every offer made over two years — never having a deal in place.

While talks have broken off, Time Warner spokesperson Eric Mangan said the company is waiting for MSG to come back to the negotiating table.

“It’s all propaganda. Obviously in commercials Time Warner and MSG are going to say the opposite of each other. Is it really a 53 percent increase, is it not? Who knows? It’s all slanted one way or another,” said Queens resident Steven Cohen, referring to Time Warner’s claim that MSG asked for a 53 percent increase in their licensing fee.

The cable company called MSG’s demands way out of line.  “We are looking out for the interests of out customers,” a spokesperson said.

“All we have asked is for Time Warner Cable to value our programming in the same way as other TV providers — nothing more, nothing less,” MSG Media President Michael Bair said.

MSG is owned by Madison Square Garden, Inc. which is chaired by Knicks and Rangers owner James Dolan.

The city’s comptroller called a foul on Time Warner for blacking out city sports fans.

“As this dispute continues, 1.3 million city residents are left without the programming they paid for,” Comptroller John Liu said.  “The least they could get is a break on their cable bill.”

Liu sent a letter to Glenn Britt, CEO of Time Warner Cable, urging the company to rebate $5.95 — the price of the Time Warner Cable Sports Pass.

“I pay all that money for cable so I could watch the Knicks, and now they say I can’t,” said Knicks fan Chris Lerner as he waited for the LIRR in Bayside.  “Going to games isn’t an option because tickets are through the roof. How much money does MSG need?”

“Customers are understandably frustrated that they are forced to pay for channels they do not receive, particularly when many customers do not have access to another cable television provider,” Liu wrote in the letter.